Tonight, the Los Angeles Dodgers play their very last game ever at Dodgertown, their spring training center in Vero Beach, Florida for the past sixty years. There is a lot of hemming and hawing and rendering of garments and gnashing of teeth about the move, but honestly? I could care less.
Vero Beach was firmly rooted in the South, the old South, the Jim Crow South. Even after the Dodgers broke the color barrier with Mr. Jackie Robinson, Vero Beach stayed deeply segregated. Maury Wills couldn't find a place in town that would give a black man a hair cut so he had to get Johnny Roseboro to shave his head with electric shears. Racism forced Maury Wills to trust a set of electric shears in the hands of a man who was once clunked over the head with a bat by Juan Marichal. Ouch.
So where are the Dodgers headed? Seems that owner Frank McCourt decided to invest $80 million to build a new training facility in Glendale, Arizona so their California fans would have a shorter trip to see the team play spring training games. Um, Frank...you can't even get your fans to stay for nine full innings during regular season games at Chavez Ravine. Do you really think they'll drive four hours deeper into the desert to see ballgames that don't even count?
So when the game is over tonight, turn off the lights and set the place on fire. Because if you leave Dodgertown standing, it will only get sullied by a far, far worse team.